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Salisbury Area AGM and Lecture "Climate Change: The factor forty problem"
Event Date/Time: 12 March 2013 18:30 to 20:00
Event Type: AGM
Industry Sector: Energy Environment & Sustainability
Wiltshire College, Salisbury
John Shepherd is a Professorial Research Fellow in Earth System Science in the School of Ocean and Earth Science. His current research includes the natural variability of the climate system, and the development of models of the climate system for the interpretation of the palaeo-climate record.
The science of climate change predicts global warming of several °C by 2100 if the CO2 level in the atmosphere increases to double its pre-industrial level - and it is now going to be very difficult indeed to keep CO2 below that level. Moreover, the climate will continue to change for a long time after that, even if we manage to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as the oceans only slowly absorb the CO2 from the air.
The big picture is that while global total emissions eventually need to be reduced by at least a factor of 4, global population growth and industrial growth by the developing nations will mean that we probably need to reduce emissions per unit of GDP by a factor of 40.
Can science and technology provide the solutions necessary for this kind of reduction?